Obama and Hillary Clinton continued to top the lists, somewhat more narrowly than in recent years
Michelle Obama and Donald Trump took second place again as well
Former President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remain the most admired man and woman in the United States – a 10-year trend for Obama and 16 years running for Clinton.
Gallup’s December poll found 17% of respondents named Obama the man they admired most, a dip from 22% of respondents saying the same last year. President Donald Trump took second place with 14% of respondents citing him when asked, open-ended, to name the man they admired most.
Gallup said about one-quarter of respondents could not name a man or woman they admire most, roughly similar to last year’s share who offered no opinion in response to the question.
The two presidents were the only ones to garner double digit support. Pope Francis took third place with 3% of respondents, and the rest of the top dozen men included politicians, religious figures and billionaires.
Clinton’s 16th consecutive year topping the most admired women’s poll showed her support dip this time from 12% to 9% of respondents. Former first lady Michelle Obama came in second with 7% of respondents, and the third place finisher at 4% support was Oprah Winfrey. The rest of the list included political figures, British royalty and Beyoncé Knowles. One percent of those surveyed named first lady Melania Trump their most admired woman, bringing her name into the top tier for the first time.
Clinton has topped the list 16 years running and taken the top spot 22 times total, which Gallup said was more than anyone else – man or woman. Obama’s 10th year as most admired man makes him second only to former President Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Gallup said sitting presidents usually win the most admired spot, and that Obama was the first former president to top the list since Eisenhower.
The two Democrats’ continued chart topping comes amid heightened polarization in US politics, where deep divisions in polls like these are the norm. A Gallup poll released earlier this month showed the share of US adults holding a favorable opinion of Clinton had dropped to 36%, a new low. Nevertheless, Clinton retained enough support among the public to top every other woman on the list.
At the same time, second-place finisher Trump’s favorable rating was down to 41% of respondents in the Gallup poll, and he has continued to earn the lowest approval ratings of any president at this point in the job since the beginning of modern polling.
Gallup’s poll of 1,049 US adults was taken from December 4-11, 2017, with a margin of error of ±4% points.